From the desk of Taylor Pickup
The chief priests wanted to kill Lazarus. Their reason was simple. Lazarus’ resurrection was causing people to believe in Jesus. He had been raised from the dead, which was serving as a testimony to the power and authority of Jesus (John 12:10-11).
The fact that someone returned from death is amazing, but so is the effect that this miracle had on others. It pointed people toward their Savior, their King. Jesus knew this would happen. Before Lazarus had even died, Jesus said, “This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it” (John 11:4). Jesus knew that giving life back to Lazarus would cause others to seek the Life-giver Himself. This was why the enemies of Jesus targeted Lazarus. He was an enormous obstacle for those who wanted to refute and destroy Jesus.
We are very similar to Lazarus. When we turned our lives to Christ, we died in the water of baptism and God resurrected us out of the water as a new person. This also points toward our future literal resurrection (Rom. 6:1-14).
However, this new life God promises us can cause others to hate us. Like Lazarus, the glory that our resurrection brings to Jesus goes against what many people believe and want. Jesus told His apostles, “Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you.” (John15:20)
But if through Jesus we have conquered sin and death, then there’s nothing to fear from men who become our enemies. If we become a target of mockery, hatred, or violence, then we’re experiencing what Jesus Himself experienced. We can even boldly die for the sake of Christ because God raised Him from the dead and therefore has the power to raise us too.